While immersed in Portland’s creative community, founder Kelley Roy identified a strong need for shared tools, space, and knowledge in our growing maker culture. In June 2011, Kelley and a small band of thinkers and makers took over a warehouse in the heart of SE Portland and established Art Design Portland, or ADX for short. ADX is a hub for collaboration where individuals and organizations make and learn. What began as a D.I.Y, bootstrapped makerspace has quickly become a local hub for both artists and artisans, pioneering a new model for both education and the modern sharing economy. In the years following our launch, ADX has incubated over 100 businesses, helped 200 crowd-funded projects reach their goals, and provided a home-away-from-home for thousands of designers, builders, entrepreneurs, hobbyists, designers and artists.
What do you consider the most important trait of a leader?
Having a clear vision and inspiring others to work with you to manifest it.
What’s the most surprising thing you’ve learned through your endeavour, so far?
There is a much bigger hunger inside of all of us to stay connected in the physical world despite our addiction to technology. ADX gives people a place to come together, face to face, and work together to bring their ideas into a physical form. It is a beautiful thing to witness.
What does your favorite day look like?
Wake up. Write down my dreams. Read a book. Fall asleep. Wake up again. Write. Make coffee. Take Merle on a long walk out in the forest. Head into ADX and have a strategy session with my team. Give an ADX tour. Go tour a local manufacturing facility. Consult with someone interested in starting an ADX. Ride my bike. Do some yoga. make a delicious meal with friends. Play music. Laugh. Sing. Watch a movie. Go to bed.
Where were you in your life before starting you business venture?
Lost and not knowing what I was really put here to do? I did some major soul searching for about a year. I read a lot of Joseph Campbell, Pema Chodron and others, and did a lot of meditating, yoga and writing. It was one of the most uncomfortable times in my life. I fully stepped into feeling lost and directionless and then I started to uncover what my true gifts are. I tried a number of different things and remained open to the possibilities. ADX was born from this experience and I feel eternally grateful for being able to find others to help me manifest my dream.
What is your favorite place, spirit animal, and food item?
The ocean is my favorite place. It grounds me and reminds me of the constant transformation that happens in the natural world of which I am a part.